What is Chromotherapy? Health Benefits of Infrared Sauna – Part 3

May 11, 2024
health benefits infrared sauna chromotherapy color therapy

When looking at the literature for the full spectrum infrared sauna at Move It Studio, you may have run across the term “Chromotherapy” and wondered, “What is Chromotherapy?” And more importantly, does chromotherapy work? Are there real health benefits?

Chromotherapy, also known as Color Light therapy, is a method of treatment that uses the visible spectrum (colors) of electromagnetic radiation to cure diseases.1 The ancient practice has countless theories — many based in science — about it’s effectiveness.

Chromotherapy History

Chromotherapy dates back thousands of years. It’s believed that applying colors to the body will help restore balance and healing. This tradition was practiced in numerous ancient cultures throughout the world. Although it’s known by different names, the idea of healing with light and color is the same.

India

“Ayurveda” is one of the world’s oldest forms of holistic medicine and is based on the belief that in order to be healthy, there must be balance. An extremely simple explanation of this complex belief, is that everything in the universe is connected and contains energy; illness occurs when these energies are out of balance. The objective is to stay healthy by keeping your body’s energy in balance. One of the ways to help achieve balance is through color, as each color contains unique energy elements.

health benefits infrared sauna chromotherapy color therapy chakras

Egypt & Greece

Ancient Egyptian mythology tells us the god Thoth (Hermes in Greek) taught them the art of healing with color.  Ancient Greece also followed this concept along with the air, fire, water, and earth elements. These were all associated with the body and it was believed that they needed to be in balance. Color was used for healing to restore the balance. They used natural colors from minerals and stones and created colored garments, oils, plasters, ointments, salves and dyes all used to treat disease. 

By the end of the Classical period in Greece, these principles were included in the scientific framework that was to remain largely unchanged in the West until the Middle Ages. In the first century A.D., Aurelius Cornelius Celsus followed the doctrines established by Pythagoras and Hippocrates and included the use of colored ointments, plasters, and flowers in several treatises on medicine.

China

Traditional Chinese medicine, at its core, is based on keeping everything in balance and uses color to adjust the flow of energy. Bringing an individual’s energy to an optimal state of physical and mental balance is believed crucial for healing.

Wellness Benefits of Chromotherapy

In modern times, the therapeutic applications of light and color are being studied in hospitals and research centers worldwide. Results indicate that full-spectrum, ultraviolet, colored, and laser light can have therapeutic value for a range of conditions from chronic pain and depression to immune disorders.  Numerous studies indicate that light therapy, as part of a healthy lifestyle, can have numerous positive health effects. As we are not medical professionals, we do not make any claim, but are providing you with benefits that were determined as a result of testing.

Studies indicate that LED light therapy can be used for temporary pain management such as joint and back pain, sore or torn muscles, sprains, arthritis, post-surgical scars, burns, wounds and more. When used with infrared technology, light therapy (phototherapy) is one of the most effective and noninvasive ways to improve overall wellness. 2

sad seasonal affective disorder chromotherapy white light full spectrum

Light therapy is also used to temporarily relieve Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD). SAD effects individuals when the lack of sunlight results in seasonal depression. Phototherapy helps with SAD by resetting the internal biological clock (Circadian rhythms), helping individuals sleep better and regulate their mood. Even companies, such as GE and Philips, have created phototherapeutic products to improve and regulate mood. 3

Cosmetic Benefits of Chromotherapy

The use of colored light in skincare treatments has gained attention for its purported ability to rejuvenate and enhance the skin’s appearance. Different colors of light are believed to target specific skin concerns, such as acne, wrinkles, and uneven pigmentation. For example, blue light therapy is commonly used to combat acne by targeting the bacteria responsible for breakouts, while red light therapy is thought to stimulate collagen production, reducing the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. 4

led light therapy beauty treatment skin infrared sauna anti aging

Chromotherapy can contribute to a holistic approach to skincare by promoting overall skin health. By harnessing the power of specific wavelengths of light, chromotherapy treatments may help improve blood circulation, reduce inflammation, and promote cellular regeneration, resulting in a clearer, more radiant complexion. Additionally, the relaxation and stress-reducing effects of chromotherapy can indirectly benefit the skin by minimizing the impact of stress-related skin conditions such as eczema and psoriasis, which can flare up during times of heightened emotional tension.

By integrating chromotherapy into skincare routines, individuals may unlock a natural and gentle approach to achieving healthier, more youthful-looking skin, complementing other skincare practices and treatments for a comprehensive cosmetic regimen.

How Does it Work? (The Scientific Stuff)

Quantum Physics tell us that everything is energy; all matter vibrates, even microscopic matter.

The idea behind string theory is simple. Look deep inside any particle and you’ll see this tiny vibrating string. This is the fundamental unit we’ve have been searching for, the fundamental entity that makes up everything.

Sera Cremonini, Associate Professor, Department of Physics, Lehigh University

Colors are wavelengths of energy that, to us, appear as color because of the potential and capabilities of the object to either absorb or reflect the energy.

quantum physics boson string theory vibration color

The vibratory rate of a substance determines its density or its form as matter. A slowly vibrating substance is referred to as physical matter, whereas the subatomic (which vibrates at or above the speed of light) is subtle matter or pure light energy. Light is electromagnetic radiation, which is the fluctuation of electric and magnetic fields in nature. More simply, light is energy, and the phenomenon of color is a product of the interaction of energy and matter. The wavelength, frequency and quantity of energy of every colorful ray are fixed for each color; that is, a specific wavelength, a certain frequency and a particular amount of energy in that wave have been denominated as a distinct color. The human eye is sensitive to electromagnetic radiation only at wavelengths roughly between 380 and 780 nm. This small segment is called the visible spectrum or visible light. Visible light can be broken down into numerous electromagnetic frequencies, and frequency relates to a color of the rainbow: red, orange, yellow, green, blue, indigo, violet and all the vibrations thereof.

Chromotherapy provides colors to the electromagnetic body or the aura (energy field) around the body, which in turn transfers energy to the physical body. This makes chromotherapy the most effective among various therapies.

NIH: A Critical Analysis of Chromotherapy and Its Scientific Evolution 1

Beside the widely recognized psychological effects, there are proven physical effects from color. Following are just three scientific examples:

Blue Light

In the 1950’s and 60’s there were numerous studies of the effects of sunlight in treating jaundice (a potentially fatal condition affecting 2/3 of premature births). They eventually found blue light was more effective and potentially less harmful in treating jaundice. The same blue light was also found to be effective in treating rheumatoid arthritis. 1

Full Spectrum Light

Studies on the use of bright white full-spectrum have found it effective in the treatment of cancers, SAD (seasonal affective disorder), major depression, eating disorders, and more. 3

Pink Light

In 1969, Alexander Schauss, PhD, began researching the effects of colors on human behavior. His studies continued into the 1970’s and he found that a certain shade of pink (subsequently named Baker-Miller pink) and a profound effective on violent behavior. When a cell at a naval correction center in Seattle was painted this shade of pink, violent behavior was completely eliminated.

pink jail violance baker miller

The rates of assault before and after exposure to Baker-Miller pink were carefully monitored for 156 days. The center then wrote a report to the Bureau of Naval Personnel, Law Enforcement and Corrections Division, Washington DC, stating that “Since the initiation of this procedure on 1 March 1979, there have been no incidents of erratic or hostile behavior during the initial phase of confinement.”

The report further states that only 15 minutes of exposure to the shade of pink was necessary to ensure that the potential for violent or agressive behavior had been reduced. 5

Benefits of Visible Spectrum Colors

Color is light split into different wavelengths vibrating at different speeds and at different frequencies. Objects that ABSORB all wavelengths and DO NOT reflect are black in nature. Objects that REFLECT all wavelengths are white in nature. Between black and white lies COLOR. 6

Red is called “The Great Energizer.”

Yellow helps awaken mental inspiration arousing higher mentality.

Green is the universal healing color. Green is midway in the color spectrum; therefore, it contains both a physical nature and a spiritual nature, in equal balance and in equal harmony.

Blue on the other hand, is at the opposite end of the visible spectrum. Blue can be used for any type of ailments associated with speech, communication, or the throat.

Orange has a freeing action upon the mind, relieving repression. Because orange is a blend of red and yellow, it combines physical energy with mental wisdom, inducing a transformation between lower physical reaction and higher mental response.

Violet is the last color we can see before light passes on to ultra-violet. Violet purifies our thoughts and feelings giving us inspiration in all undertakings. The violet energy connects us to our spiritual self bringing guidance, wisdom and inner strength, and enhances artistic talent and creativity. Leonardo da Vinci proclaimed that you can increase the power of meditation ten fold by meditating under the gentle rays of violet, as found in church windows.

color therapy sauna benefits chromotherapy

How to Use Color Therapy

Color therapy (chromotherapy) uses colors for their proposed wellness abilities in treating emotional and physical disturbances. Practiced in ancient civilizatinons, it is based on the premise that different colors evoke different responses in people. For example, some colors are considered to be stimulating, whereas others may be soothing.

There are numerous studies with a wealth of information about light and color therapy. Scientists and non-scientists both are discovering it’s potential. Make sure and consult with a reputable health care provider before using color therapy for medical use.

Sources

1 Samina T. Yousuf Azeemi, Mohsin Raza, “A Critical Analysis of Chromotherapy and Its Scientific Evolution”, Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine, vol. 2, Article ID 254639, 8 pages, 2005. https://doi.org/10.1093/ecam/neh137

2NASA Research Illuminates Medical Uses of Light“, NASA, May 19, 2022. https://spinoff.nasa.gov/NASA-Research-Illuminates-Medical-Uses-of-Light

3 Corliss, Julie, Executive Editor, Harvard Heart Letter, “Light therapy: Not just for seasonal depression?
Bright light therapy can help ease SAD, major depression, and perinatal depression
“. Harvard Health Publishing, October 28, 2022. https://www.health.harvard.edu/blog/light-therapy-not-just-for-seasonal-depression-202210282840

4 Cleveland Clinic, “Red Light Therapy“, December 1, 2021. https://my.clevelandclinic.org/health/articles/22114-red-light-therapy

5 Schauss, Alexander. (1985). “The Physiological Effect of Color on the Suppression of Human Aggression: Research on Baker-Miller Pink“. International Journal of Biosocial Research. 7. 55-64. https://www.researchgate.net/publication/236843504_The_Physiological_Effect_of_Color_on_the_Suppression_of_Human_Aggression_Research_on_Baker-Miller_Pink

6The Benefits of Clearlight Color Light Therapy” (cites numerous studies). https://infraredsauna.com/benefits-clearlight-infrared-sauna-led-color-light-therapy/

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